Here’s a nifty link for StaleMate on the iTunes App Store.

And if you want to send me any feedback, email me at stalematedev[at]pyehouse[dot]com.

A fast paced, tactical game based on chess, you can play against the computer or others through pass and play or GameCenter. Outplay your opponent by keeping their pieces threatened while keeping your own unthreatened. Once you place a piece, it won’t move but keeps a wary eye on your opponent’s pieces by threatening empty tiles. Play to defend, play to force your opponent’s hand, play to break the StaleMate!

StaleMate is a chess based strategy game involving placement without movement. The first thing to realize is that StaleMate is not like typical chess. It relies on pieces from standard chess but in fact differs quite a bit from typical chess. As in standard chess, white moves first, followed by black and taking turns from there on. In StaleMate, if you are able to play, you must play. You may only pass if you have no moves available. Play ends when both players have no more pieces or are unable to place any of the pieces they have.

The objective of StaleMate is to score enough points to defeat your opponent. Each player starts with 8 pieces, 2 rooks, 2 bishops, 2 knights and 2 pawns. The first player to play may place any of their 8 pieces on any tile on the board. From then on, each player takes turns placing one of their pieces on the board. You may pick any piece you have available that has a valid move and place it such that it is threatening an enemy piece while itself not being threatened. An example is in order. In the screenshot below, it is white’s turn. The player has selected a knight and the red highlighted squares are the valid moves. Note that in each highlighted square, the knight is threatening an enemy piece while simultaneously not being threatened.

 

While standard chess pieces are used, pawns are handled rather differently than their standard counterparts. First of all, pawns in StaleMate threaten all adjacent tiles, much like a king. Second, a pawn can be played in one of two methods. The simple method plays like any other piece, placing it in an open tile such that it threatens an enemy piece while itself being unthreatened. But a pawn may also replace one of your pieces, dropping into that pieces tile and putting the replaced piece back into your tray for later play. In this manner you can make tactical use of one of your potentially more powerful pieces later. But there is a cost. For each pawn you do not use as a replacement, you earn a point. Thus each player starts with two points for the two pawns they have not played yet. Each pawn used in a replacement loses a point. Better be careful about using it in this manner!

One more thing… the black player must outscore white outright in order to win. Ties go to white. This is balanced out by black always being able to have the final play of the game, a very powerful advantage.

StaleMate can be played very quickly or very slowly, depending on how much effort you wish to put into each play. I hope you enjoy playing as much as I enjoyed making the game.